A recent moderate swell on the sea and big tides more or less started the winter cod season for many anglers with some big bags of smaller fish being reported from several areas. Some tides have seen some bigger specimens landed and the top mark again has been South Shields pier where cod up to 5lb have been taken on crab and lugworm baits. The rock edges down to Roker have also been productive with the popular venues at Marsden and Whitburn producing bags of up to 10 fish on late evening and night time low tides. The Durham beaches and Hartlepool piers have been relatively quiet, though small undersize cod are showing in numbers, with bigger whiting being taken on both daylight and night tides as well as the usual selection of flatfish.
Cod up to 6lb have been taken in the lower Tyne and there are still plenty of flounders in the upper river. The Wear still has lots of small coalfish in the lower river with the odd specimens up to 2lb amongst them, and good numbers of flounders further upriver.
The Ryhope Tuesday evening heaviest fish sweepstake saw all anglers land bags of flounders, coalfish, and eels in the Wear. Lee Burton won with a flounder of 1lb 1oz, Alan Burton had a flounder of 15oz, and he also had a flounder of 14oz to tie with Terry Mann’s coalie for third place. The Fishermans Locker sweepstake fished at the White Wall in the Wear saw Tommy Tate win with 306cm, Gareth Gardner had 292cm, and Steve Rackstraw had 227cm.
The recent Seaham A.C. Treasurers Cup match saw 58 fishing with many fishing the newly accessible South Pier for the first time with 14 members weighing in 20 fish for 21.09lb. David Sinclair was on the South pier to win with two fish weighing 4.20lb, Dave Stoker also fished the pier and had a single cod of 3.01lb, and Jim Dobie was third with five fish totalling 2.21lb from Hendon Promenade.
The first big open match of the winter season is the Seaton Sluice open is on Sunday September 14th with fishing from 11.30am until 3.30pm between Tynemouth pier to Seahouses South pier. Register at the Bank House Social Club Newbiggin on the day. Basic entry is £13 for adults and £3 for juniors. First prize is £500 for the heaviest bag, £100 and £50 for the top two heaviest round fish, and £50 for the best flatfish.